Trauma is pervasive in the clinical world of counseling. The current literature indicates adverse effects for survivors of a traumatic event and the counselors listening to the details of traumatic events, but there is a gap in research on the adverse effects trauma in counseling has on supervisors. This study aims to understand the lived experiences of supervisors who have dealt with traumatic experiences in clinical work through interviews with current supervisors of those who work with trauma. The results indicate trauma-informed supervision consists of trauma taking many forms, supervisors (and counselors) using the self in their work, supervisors knowing their stance, and developing a “third eye” as a new way of seeing.


supervision, vicarious trauma, trauma-informed supervision, qualitative, phenomenological

Author Bio(s)

Gina C. Martin, PhD, LPC, NCC (https://orcid.org/0000-0002-7372-5307) is an Assistant Professor at University of Wisconsin Whitewater. Her contact information is: marting@uww.edu.

Gideon Litherland, PhD is Core Faculty at The Family Institute of Northwestern University. Please direct correspondence to glitherland@family-institute.org.

David K. Duys, PhD is an Associate Professor at The University of Iowa. Please direct correspondence to david-duys@uiowa.edu.

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